‘Dig’-ing up history

How did boy’s volleyball get its start at SHS?


Photo contributed by Cindy Maude

SHS boys volleyball team 1993-94

During the 1993-94 school year, Cindy Maude was the coach of girls volleyball at SHS, and her son was a freshman. He had grown up around his sisters, who played volleyball, and he seemed to enjoy the sport as well. She had talked to a few of her connections about creating a boys program the year before and noticed that some other boys from her son’s elementary school were interested in volleyball as well. With the permission of the principal and superintendent, she started the boy’s volleyball  program at SHS, which  was also one of the first teams in Indiana. 

“We had to go through each step: the (athletic director), the principal, the superintendent of the schools, etc.,” Maude said. 

Maude and others who were involved were not given any stipend or financial support from the school to begin the program, and they raised most of the funds through team sponsors. The lack of pay for coaching was not an issue for Maude, however, because the interest the boys had was far more of a focus. 

The boys basketball coach was a grand part of recruitment, since he felt the skills taught by volleyball would improve their basketball skills. 

“Some of the boys were dual sports, but we worked around their schedules,” Maude said. 

Source: Statista

Current assistant coach Joseph Leonard has been involved with the team for 18 years. Up until this year, when the boys volleyball was classified as an emerging sport, the coaches have been made up solely of volunteers. 

“We had a lot of former students and players that came back to help coach over the years,” Leonard said. 

The past three years of the program have seen a steady increase in interest. This year, there are enough coaches and players for the program to have three teams. While the emerging sport title is a big step in the program, the want for it didn’t begin in recent years. Maude and coaches for other teams had been advocating for the club to become a sport from the very beginning. 

“We had gone and petitioned for it to be an Indiana Athletic Association sport for years,” Maude said. 

The value of the team goes beyond the skills it teaches the boys. It has added another sport for boys to participate in, and it has opened doors for players outside of SHS. 

“We’ve got two guys now playing at Wabash College and we’ve had other players over the years that have gone into college too,” Leonard said.